GENERIC NAME: XANTHINE DERIVATIVES - ORAL
USES: This medication improves breathing by opening air passages in the lungs. It is used in the treatment of asthma, chronic bronchitis, and emphysema. This medication works best when taken on an empty stomach one hour before or two hours after meals. If stomach upset occurs, it may be taken with food. Long acting capsules and tablets must be swallowed whole. Crushing or chewing them may destroy the long action and increase the possibility of side effects. If capsules are too large to swallow, open the capsule and mix the contents with jelly or applesauce and swallow without chewing. This medication works best if a constant level is maintained in the body. Do this by taking doses at evenly spaced intervals.
SIDE EFFECTS: Dizziness, headache, lightheadedness, heartburn, stomach pain, loss of appetite, restlessness, nervousness, sleeplessness or increased urination may occur as your body adjusts to the medication. If these symptoms persist or worsen, inform your doctor. Inform your doctor if you experience: chest pain, rapid or irregular heartbeat, confusion, severe stomach pain, breathing difficulties. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.
PRECAUTIONS: Avoid drinking large amounts of beverages containing caffeine (coffee, tea, colas) or eating large amounts of chocolate. Caffeine can increase side effects of this medication. Smoking affects this medication. Be sure to tell your doctor if you smoke or use nicotine. Inform your doctor if you stop smoking. Your dose may need to be adjusted. This medication should be used during pregnancy only if clearly needed. Because small amounts of this drug appear in breast milk, consult with your doctor before breast-feeding. Tell your doctor your complete medical history especially if you are taking medicine (beta-blockers) for high blood pressure.
DRUG INTERACTIONS: Inform your doctor about all the medicines you use (both prescription and nonprescription), especially if you take: cimetidine, erythromycin, troleandomycin, mexiletine, tacrine, barbiturates, disulfiram, rifampin, thiabendazole, birth control pills, rifabutin, ticlopidine, quinolone antibiotics, beta-blockers, phenytoin, fluvoxamine (an SSRI antidepressant), St John's wort. Do not start or stop any medicine without doctor or pharmacist approval.
OVERDOSE: If overdose is suspected, contact your local poison control center or emergency room immediately. US residents can call the US national poison hotline at 1-800-222-1222. Canadian residents should call their local poison control center directly. Symptoms of overdose may include unusually fast or slow heartbeat, loss of appetite, nausea/vomiting, sleeplessness, irritability, restlessness, headache, increased thirst, fever, ringing in ears, delirium, muscle twitching or weakness, seizures, sweating, or fast breathing.
NOTES: Don't change your diet without first checking with your doctor. Large amounts of char-broiled foods or a high protein, low carbohydrate diet can affect the action of this medication. Do not change brands of this medication without consulting your doctor or pharmacist. Not all brands are identical in action.
MISSED DOSE: If you miss a dose, take as soon as remembered; do not take if it is almost time for the next dose, instead, skip the missed dose and resume your usual dosing schedule. Do not "double-up" the dose to catch up.
STORAGE: Store at room temperature away from moisture and sunlight. Do not store in the bathroom. Do not freeze liquid forms of this medication.
MEDICAL ALERT: Your condition can cause complications in a medical emergency. For enrollment information call MedicAlert at 1-800-854-1166 (USA), or 1-800-668-1507 (Canada).
Related Disease Conditions
COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease)
COPD or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease is a lung condition caused by smoking tobacco, exposure to secondhand smoke, and/or air pollutants. Conditions that accompany COPD include chronic bronchitis, chronic cough, and emphysema. Symptoms of COPD include shortness of breath, wheezing, and chronic cough. Treatment of COPD includes GOLD guidelines, smoking cessation, medications, and surgery. The life expectancy of a person with COPD depends on the stage of the disease.
The lungs are primarily responsible for the exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide between the air we breathe and the blood. Eliminating carbon dioxide from the blood is important, because as it builds up in the blood, headaches, drowsiness, coma, and eventually death may occur. The air we breathe in (inhalation) is warmed, humidified, and cleaned by the nose and the lungs.
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